We are a Veteran Owned Business, providing 20% discounts for Veterans, First Responders, Elementary and High School teachers. We remain open during the shutdown period, so please contact us to set up a phone or Zoom meeting. Taking care of you and your family, It's What We Do!

Skip to Content
Klenk Law

My Mom Died as a Widow in Philadelphia Without a Will. How do I Sell her Home?

Posted on Mon Jun 20, 2016, on Intestacy, Dying Without a Will

Our “Ask a Question” Mailbag: Parent Dying Without a Will

Most Recently Updated August 1, 2018.

When a Parent Dies Without a Will

Amy Besser, Probate Attorney. Parent Dying Without a Will

“My Mom died without a Will as a widow in Philadelphia. How do I sell her home?”

 

Parent Dying Without a Will

If you Die Without a Will, you Die “Intestate.”

This question has come up with increasing frequency due to Philadelphia’s improving real estate market. The first step is to examine your mother’s deed.  Did she hold title to the property?  Obtain a copy of the deed for a nominal fee from the Records Department in City Hall.  Or, you can us get a copy, and we can review its terms with you.

If your mom owned the property, then someone must gain authority to sell the home. When there is no Will, authority to collect and dispose of a deceased person’s assets requires obtaining Letters of Administration. Your mother died a resident of Philadelphia.  Therefore, the Register of Wills in Philadelphia County will hear the Petition for Letters of Administration.

See my website for more information about the Pennsylvania Rules of Intestacy.

If You Die Without a Will, The State Determines Your Administrator.

The Pennsylvania Decedents, Estates, and Fiduciary Code lists who shall be entitled to serve and in what order. In your case, your mother’s children are the first group designated to serve as Administrator. If you are an only child, barring anything unusual, you would have the first right to serve. If mom had other children, then you may need them to renounce their right to serve.  Should they not renounce, then hope they do not oppose your Petition.  Should they oppose your Petition to serve as Administrator, a hearing is necessary.

If the Siblings Can’t Agree, A Hearing Will be Necessary.

After a hearing at the Register of Wills office on your Petition, the Register will decide to whom to grant Letters of Administration.  If you are appointed Administrator, you will then have the authority to sell the home.  But, you will also have the responsibility to probate your mom’s estate properly.  This responsibility includes filing the inheritance tax return, paying her outstanding bills, filing her final income tax return and more.  You will also want a full release from your siblings.  We regularly represent Administrators and would be happy to serve as your attorney.  Our job would be to make the process as easy as possible and to keep you out of trouble.

See my website for more information about the Probate Process.

More Probate Questions?

Intestacy is only part of the overall probate process. By all means, if you wish to learn more, please read my more detailed article, The Probate Process All You Need to Know.

In Conclusion: Parent Dying Without a Will

I hope that this article was helpful in explaining what to do if a parent dies intestate. Further, I included links to even more detailed information on my website. Therefore, please contact me and let me know how I did. Certainly, your comments and questions are welcome!

Let our Probate Lawyers help walk you through what can be a confusing process. To begin with, call to speak to one of our experienced Probate Attorneys.  By all means, our lawyers are ready to answer your questions. In fact, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation. Ultimately our goal is to make the process as painless as possible!

Wills, Trusts, Probate, and Estate Litigation, It’s All We Do

Tags:

Administrator, Amy Besser, Death, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Probate, Probate Attorney, Probate Lawyer, Rules of Intestacy

What Our clients are saying

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

I saw four lawyers and was told by all of them; I should just forget contesting my mother's will. I knew what happened, but it is very hard to prove undue influence. I contacted the Law Offices of Peter L. Klenk & Associates. Attorney Amanda DiChello took my case. They were very honest and upfront about what would be involved trying to prove what I knew was true. Attorney DiChello may be young but she is extremely knowledgeable and skilled. She listened and understood what I conveyed to her. She knew exactly what information to use and crafted an outstanding interrogatory and many powerful depositions. Attorney DiChello understood the various emotional feelings this case created for my family and me; she was always there for us with a kind and encouraging word. We went to trial. The amount of work which she and her Paralegal did for the trial was incredible. They both knew my case inside and out! Attorney DiChello's powerful interrogative and thinking skills produced a positive outcome. Attorney DiChello did what other seasoned lawyers said was impossible!

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

Like another reviewer, I contacted Peter through his website using the free consultation link, for a question regarding PA inheritance taxes. The question was quite technical and difficult to explain, and the answer was nowhere to be found on the web. Peter grasped precisely what I was asking, and provided a clear, helpful response (with a touch of humor) the very next day.

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

Peter Klenk and his associates are responsive and professional - It is a pleasure to work with their team. If you have needs in estate planning or administration, they are the firm to go to in the Philadelphia area!

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

I was referred to Peter after my divorce to put documents together to protect my assets. He suggested a number of documents that would help protect my children and their future. Also, he put together wills, power of attorney and living wills. I initially spoke with him on the phone, he took 30-40 minutes to understand my situation and explain the benefits of having such documents. After a week or two, I met with him in his office and signed the documents. Everything else was remote phone calls and emails. He re-explained these documents and what whom to share. I am in good hands.

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

I met Peter soon after he started his practice in Philadelphia, PA. He and his team have always been there for me and my various inquiries throughout my life-changing events, corporate relocations. I have lived in various cities throughout the nation, I have never had a problem in contacting Peter or a member of his team. He and his office responds quickly and returns calls to me to fulfill my requests for information or to revise my estate needs while posing relevant thought-provoking questions that I need to consider to secure my future. One of Peter's best qualities is his ability to answer clients complicated questions in a simple way to ensure comprehension.

Let us put our expertise to work for you.

Free consultation within 24 hours.